Smart locks are one of the most exciting prospects in the world of smart homes and home automation. As the smart speaker and home surveillance market have become saturated, smart locks have not gained a great deal of traction in the UK. The exception appears to be in the US when August is quite popular.
Using a key feels a bit archaic in a world of smartphones, contactless payments, and semi-automated electric cars. In recent months I have locked out my partner thanks to leaving the key in the door, locked myself out after a run, and needed to replace the cylinder because the I couldn’t find the code for my extra secure bump proof Yale keys. So I am eager to ditch them.
I have previously reviewed the Nuki Smart Lock and was pleasantly surprised by it, though it did have issues which I will address later when comparing these products.
The Yale Conexis L1 Smart Lock has been around for a while now, and Yale is about the biggest name in the lock business, so if anyone is going to do it right, it should be Yale.
The Yale Conexis L1 is designed for multi-point doors, and it approaches the problem as you might expect, you replace all the lock and handle hardware. The lock has various electronics inside that turn the locking mechanism, and you control this via phone, tag, or keycard.
The hardware looks and feels superb, it is weighty and heavy, and you can choose various colours. If you have twin doors like me, it won’t match the other handle, but the overall design looks superb both inside and out.
It used to have an RRP of £269.99, but Amazon has it on consistent offer for £169.99 around £30 cheaper than the Nuki, which has a far inferior look and build quality.
The inevitable concern people have when you say smart lock is hackers. While this is a possibility, logically I don’t see it being a huge concern, though I guess it depends where you live. In Blackpool, I don’t imagine there are many hackers skilled enough to hack my door, they would also then need to know I had the Conexis L1 and also want to rob my house.
Even with the possibility of hacking, it is often easier to bump an older euro cylinder, unless you have gone out of your way to fit anti-bump locks, you will almost certainly be susceptible to bumping, which takes seconds, and limited skill. The other option which is quicker than hacking and bumping is just to smash a window.
So the security of this lock is not a major concern for me.
This may be different for people living in Kensington though I am sure they use more professional solutions for their security.